Part 4. Risking the Day Job July 2008 - Back in Los Angeles
I wasn’t sure how to approach my boss and tell him I’d be gone for one week a month starting next month. It was a lot to ask, and I was prepared to quit if he said no. I didn’t want to give up my day job because it made me feel like a useful member of society. Also, it meant I was a working artist - if Matte Extensions can be called art, and my payscale could be called working.
It took a night of turning over approaches, but I figured it out.
I went to him and said, “Hey I’ve got a lot of loans to pay off.” I paused, watching his face get worried, anticipating what I was about to ask for. Was this me quitting? Or worse - asking for a raise?
“The amount I’m currently getting paid just isn’t enough to sustain me and get me out of the hole.” I paused again watching his reaction contort further in a subtle way that tried to be unreadable.
“I wanted to ask for one week off a month to work at a separate job so I can get out of debt.” His face relaxed.
“I’ll do what’s needed to do the four weeks worth of work in the time when I am here. If that means weekends. Nights. You name it. And I’ll always give you months warning of when I won’t be available. Is that all right?”
He agreed, and I realized how it’s risky conversations like this that make me feel alive. With that out of the way, I still had a month before my first gig, and that was a far scarier prospect.